A new lethal invention, an improvised butane-fired single shot gun with marbles for bullets is now widespread in Ilang in Bunawan, adding another to the deadly arsenal available to violent youth gangs for use in street riots.
Known as Buga, the home-made gun carries the same name of the noise-making gas-fired PVC cannons used in greeting Christmas and New Year.
But while the merrymaking Buga blares out loud noises from four-inch pipes, the latest Buga spews out deadly marbles from its one-inch barrel.
The improvised gun, a crude shot gun has a two-foot barrel linked to a gas pipe and canister for butane under its crude wooden body. The big bang is sparked by a trigger salvaged from cigarettes lighters.
Even as it is crude, Buga packs a wallop. It could bore a hole on a 1/4mm plywood and galvanized iron sheet from 40 feet away. It shoots through a large standing banana stem which could be fatal if the target is a human body.
While the deadly gun has not figured in fatal shooting, a boy, hit in the leg, and a man, grazed in the neck by the marble bullets, last week sought medical attention after the accidental shooting. This week a security guard luckily missed death when a bullet fired by a gang of teenage thieves who intruded into Holcim Philippines hit only his skull cap.
Although now used to shoot birds in Kobbler Federation socialized housing villages in Ilang, Buga could prove lethal if in the hands of rioting youth gangs, whose dealy weapons include knives, Indian arrow and sumpak, a single bullet pipe gun fed with .38 bullets.
According to Ilang Barangay Captain Romeo Cabling, barangay tanods already confiscated five of the deadly weapons, but the gun maker, which he said is still to be identified, continues to churn out more of the cheap guns to sell to villagers.